Episode #3475

Music Based on East Asian Stories

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Tuesday, June 04, 2013

For this New Sounds listen to ambitious works inspired by East Asian storytelling.  There’s music based on one of the classic Chinese epic tales – “Monkey,” as retold and done up by Damon Albarn (of the Brit- pop band Blur, and of the animated rock band, Gorillaz), and Jamie Hewlett with many other participants.  “Monkey: Journey to the West” is a mammoth music theatre work/hybrid opera performed in Mandarin and features over 50 Chinese acrobats, martial arts experts and a team of tiny contortionists.  It will be part of the Lincoln Center Festival this summer. 

Plus, there’s music from Chinese alternative rocker Song Yuzhe, operating under the name DaWangGang, who has made an unexpected and bewildering combination of Chinese opera & folk, with throat-singing, Buddhist chant, & the horsehair fiddle, to boot.   Also, listen to music by saxophone player Fred Ho that draws on martial arts films, Japanese manga and anime.

PROGRAM # 3475, Based on East Asian stories (First aired on 6/4/2013)                                                               






Wild Tune Stray Rhythm

Meeting Two Wizards On the Mountain Road [6:06]
Talking About Birds [4:57]

Jaro 4312 or

Damon Albarn/Jamie Hewlett

Monkey: Journey to the West

Disappearing Volcano [6:09]
Monkey Bee [5:01]

XL Records, #388. or

Fred Ho

Deadly She-Wolf Assassin  at Armageddon

In A Silent Way I Seek My Prey  [5:26]
Colonel Ulysses Sam Armageddon [4:27]
Qaseem the Killing Machine [6:13]

Big Red Media / Innova - #788

Tan Dun, featuring Yo-Yo Ma.

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon; Eternal Vow; Silk Road [9:12]

Sony Classical #89347
Available at,
iTunes or

Comments [1]

Jennie Livingston from Brooklyn

Loved that you played the Fred Ho in this episode! I saw Deadly She-Wolf Assassin at Armageddon a couple of nights ago at LaMaMa and it was incredible. But -- the choreography and swordplay were intense, and made it hard to focus on the music. The songs sounded so great on the radio tonight, driving over the Brooklyn Bridge.

Jun. 05 2013 01:22 AM

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